Many people are struggling under the heavy weight of debt, but some women are starting to flex their financial muscles and fight their way through it. It's called the "Debt Free Boot Camp" and it's run by the Bottomless Closet. The organization offers career, financial and personal development services to women in New York. Candice Cooper, from the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn, is one of those women. One year ago, this single mom of two was buried in over 20-thousand dollars of debt.and didn't know how to get out. "My credit got bad, things got backed up, bills weren't paid, charges started to accrue." To climb out, Candice enrolled in boot camp. Tami peter is this boot camp's drill Sergeant. "I'm so passionate about trying to empower women through financial independence because women's self-esteem increases exponentially when they are in control of their finances rather than their finances controlling them." One of the first steps Peter suggests to clients...write down every single thing they spend money on for 30 days. "One hundred percent of the time women have told me they are shocked at where there money went and they didn't know taking inventory of where money goes is the first step, then figuring out where you can cut back on some expenses." Another suggestion? Get on the phone with collection agencies and credit card companies and try to negotiate a lower business rate, or even a settlement of less than you actually owe. "There's more cooperation from creditors because they would rather get partial payment than no payment at all." Another important tip, keep only one credit card, the one you have had the longest. Get rid of the rest. Also, set up your bills on auto pay, which ensured you'll never be late again and you save on stamps. Pay yourself first. Have a set amount deposited in your savings account. The balance goes into the checking account to pay bills. Candice did these and more and within a year had eliminated her debt completely...enough to buy a brand new car. "If you're in debt, learn how to manage it, but don't run from it."