The monarch and the Princess Royal visited the Edinburgh Climate Change Institute (ECCI) at the University of Edinburgh on Thursday to learn about its work.
The Queen’s comments come ahead of the Cop26 Climate Change conference in Glasgow which starts on October 31.
It was the Queen's final engagement as part of the traditional Royal Week visit to Scotland.
Speaking with experts from Climate XChange, the Queen could be heard commenting on the global issue.
She said: "It does mean we are going to have to change the way we do things really, in the end."
Anne Marte Bergeseng, knowledge exchange manager at the organisation, told the PA news agency her discussion with the monarch covered "everything, essentially" about a greener future and what that means for our way of living.
The Queen and her daughter Anne also met representatives from the Children's Parliament who explained their recent contribution to Scotland's Climate Assembly.
The children presented the monarch with two rowan trees that will be planted as part of the Queen's Green Canopy, a UK-wide tree planting initiative to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee next year.
The Queen finished the event by unveiling a plaque for the institute and listening to a speech from university principal Peter Mathieson.
He spoke about the challenges faced by the workforce during the pandemic and what it may mean for the future.
After the presentation, the Queen said: "It's very unnatural for us, obviously we're going to have to change our lives a bit.
"Nothing can be quite normal again or what we thought."
After the royal visit, Dave Reay, ECCI executive director told PA: "It's a massive honour to have Her Majesty and Her Royal Highness come to visit the ECCI and be so interested in all the different actions we have been taking.
"It was a lovely event."
The tour coincided with the announcement of the Edinburgh Earth Initiative (EEI), a project aiming to boost global leadership on the adaption to and mitigation of climate change.
EEI will be a focal point for the university's research on the climate, and will have an emphasis on supporting global partnerships to deliver solutions.