Of course this works against you.
It wasnt until I relaxed and abandoned that search for validation that others relaxed around me. They drew energy from my behavior and, as a confident woman, I was able to blend in with ease. It turned out that my own doubts had been conspiring against me.
Make no mistake that this is normal because after being socialized for decades to suppress any trace of femininity, trying to bring it to the fore injects great trepidation and worry. You are disappointing everyone around you who expect better. This mindset can be pervasive and takes energy to defeat but, as you see the difference when you relax, you can't believe you didn't see this sooner. It is akin to an epiphany.
I eventually learned that the only person you need approval from is yourself and, as someone who struggled greatly with this, it turned out to have been the far bigger challenge.