McIlroy was leading at the halfway stage before slipping down the field, but he preferred to take the positives out of the week, one of which was playing in the final pairing on the last two days.
"I think it was more just with my game to see where I was and what I needed to do," he added. "I felt my ball striking was pretty good, it was hard to really judge your putting because the greens got a little bumpy at the end of the week.
But I feel I worked a bit on my putting this week and it feels good.
"But really just I think the experience of being in the last group for two days in a row on Saturday and Sunday, that will help. “I didn't really expect to be first week back, I was trying to just play my way into a little bit of form and I was sort of hoping that if I could improve each and every round, that would be a big bonus.
"I didn't do that, but I got myself in a position where I could have, I had a chance to win the tournament. So I was happy with that.”