The Mental Health Impacts of Major Life Changes

3 min readMay 5


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Written by KURA Writer- Rylee Nelson

Change is inevitable in life, life changes may be foreseen, but some are unexpected. Whether you go through a positive or negative change, it can have an impact on your mental health. Change can be overwhelming, and recognizing when it has negatively affected your mental health and seeking the necessary help is important. This article will provide some insight into different life changes that may impact mental health and how to recognize and cope with the stress, depression, and anxiety that may result from them.

Some life changes that may impact mental health include retirement, loss of loved ones, health concerns, financial stress, and changes in living situations. How changes are perceived and dealt with can be due to personal outlooks on life. If you have a negative outlook on life, these changes may increase your negative feelings and stress levels (WebMD, 2021). Having a positive mindset can be helpful when coping with change. There are several healthy ways to cope with different life changes that include (ACS, 2019):

● Take care of yourself: Do things you enjoy, like watch your favorite show, take a hot bath, and maintain an overall healthy lifestyle by eating healthy and regularly exercising.

● Try to maintain your normal lifestyle: Try not to make any big life changes right after another one occurs to decrease your chances of further lowering your sense of security.

● Find support: Talk to your friends, family, and doctor about what you’re going through. Joining a support group may also be helpful and allows you to talk to people who have been through similar situations.

The signs and symptoms of anxiety and depression that you would notice in yourself may differ from what others notice in you. The early signs of anxiety and depression you may see in yourself include avoidance of activities or other things you used to enjoy doing. For anxiety specifically, you may experience increased heart rate or rapid breathing, while for depression, it may be recurring feelings of sadness and self-isolation (Mayo Clinic, 2022). Others may notice changes in your behavior, such as social withdrawal, neglect of responsibilities, and irritability. If you or others notice any of these changes, you should talk to your provider so you can receive the appropriate support and treatment to address your symptoms.

If you find yourself struggling with your mental health following big life changes, know that it’s normal and you don’t have to go through it alone. It’s essential to be aware of your mental health, and if you’re unsure of what kind of help to seek, you can ask your doctor. Life is full of ups and downs, and it’s natural for you to feel sad, overwhelmed, and anxious when facing major changes. It’s important to be patient and give yourself time to feel and work through your emotions as you adapt to new circumstances.


American Cancer Society. (2019, May 10). The importance of Support During the Grief Process. Seeking Help and Support for Grief and Loss. Retrieved April 26, 2023, from

Mayo Clinic Health System. (2022, May 4). Identifying signs of anxiety and depression. Mayo Clinic Health System. Retrieved April 28, 2023, from

WebMD. (2021, October 25). What to Know About How to Deal With Change. WebMD. Retrieved April 26, 2023, from




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