James Arthur admits he grew up "overnight" after welcoming his first child into the world.

The 'Say You Won't Let Go' hitmaker became a father for the first time to baby daughter Emily - whom he has with Jessica Grist - in November, and the little one has given his life purpose and meaning.

He explained to OK! magazine: "As soon as she was born I felt like I grew up overnight. People often say I’m emotionally intelligent, but I failed to really understand what the real point of life was. I had this unhealthy obsession with just wanting to be recognised for my music. Now I’ve got Emily, I realise my whole motivation has changed. I’m super happy with life."

What's more, the 35-year-old singer - who has been open about his battles with depression that nearly derailed his career - says being a dad has stopped his mental health "spiraling" out of control, though he still suffers from panic attacks.

Asked if he's in a happier place, he said: "I am, but I realise depression is something very real and it never really goes away. I would be lying if I said I don’t have some very bad days. I still suffer from panic attacks – I think I always will.

"One thing I would say is that I’ve never felt better equipped to deal with those dark days as I do now. I’m 35 years old and now I’m a dad with a baby girl so I’ve begun to learn how not to let it take me over. I don’t spiral the way I used to. It’s much more manageable."

The couple tragically lost their unborn child after Jess suffered an ectopic pregnancy.

He said: "Yes, that was a very difficult time for both of us. Having her has made everything right in the universe again, I suppose."

Praising Jess as an amazing mother, he continued: "I’m really pleased for Jess. She’s an incredible mother – she has taken to it like a duck to water, which is really lovely to see. We are both so happy."

The former 'X Factor' star made the documentary 'James Arthur: Out Of Our Minds' about fame and its toll on his mental health.

Asked if it helped him, he replied: "In a way because at that time I felt I didn’t belong anywhere. I felt isolated and lonely and was still having panic attacks. So during the filming, Jess and I moved back to my hometown of Redcar."