Is there any hope for a fearful cat that was never socialized as a kitten?

I have a very fearful 3- year old cat that apparently spent most or all of her life as a stray (she's not feral.) She showed up on someone's doorstep about to give birth, and was taken to a cat rescue after she had her kittens and was spayed, which is where I got her from. I am therefore assuming from her... show more I have a very fearful 3- year old cat that apparently spent most or all of her life as a stray (she's not feral.) She showed up on someone's doorstep about to give birth, and was taken to a cat rescue after she had her kittens and was spayed, which is where I got her from. I am therefore assuming from her history and behavior that she was never properly socialized.

She is an only cat but is still extremely fearful...she jumped about 6 feet across the room and onto the floor from a height of about 5 feet in order to get away from someone that really wasn't even that close to her...I've never seen anything like it! (She wasn't hurt, thankfully.)

She generally hides all day and will occasionally make an appearance and let people pet her, but refuses to be held, picked up or even approached.

I have heard that the best thing to do in this case is to flat-out ignore it for 2-3 weeks, and then it will "value attention" more and "be better". Does that work and if not, what does?
Update: She is an "only cat" in a very quiet household of two people that have experience with cats. She stays indoors all the time, is spayed, and has no health problems.
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