Dynalist really is a blank page, and there’s no wrong way to use it. Look at “bullet journal” subreddits for good ideas.
I’ll give my personal methods. And they come from a decade of trying out a hundred different “to do list/workflowy-esque” apps, huge templates, minimal templates, hundreds of hours of tinkering, coding, etc. I have settled into my current dynalist methods for over a year, which is probably the longest I’ve gone on one platform. So, as simple as my methodology sounds, a lot of experiences lead to it.
For tasks with dates, I write a date with the ! operator on an item, and it stays in sync with google calendar. It’s a pro feature I think, but very worth it. I then use google calendar for alerts and schedules. Within dynalist, I generally hit the “move” hotkey and send them all to a node called calendar, and then “sort by date”.
For task management, I have an inbox to triage new items. “Dynalist Companion clipper” is a must have. It even works with gmail (as long as youre in the mode where each email retains a unique URL even when archived). I usually use google assistant to vocally add things otherwise. When Google Assistant hears a trigger word it connects to the dynlist API and inserts what I said into the correct node. I have Google Assistant on my smartwatch and smart speakers. Then, once a day, I clear out the inbox by moving things to categories with priority numbers. Using a quick hotkey. These are arbitrary but I call them s1 for shopping list, f1 for free time (stuff that can be procrastinated a long time), w1 for my job, t1 for thoughts and philosophies, n for today. The today items are permanantly on display on a amazon tablet i taped to my wall, in a bigger font i can see from afar. It just keeps me from forgetting what im doing.
Within each category are lower priority nodes. Within s1 is s2, within s2 is s3, all the way down to s5, the lowest priority. So, as I go thru the s1 items, I “move” some down to s2 if they aren’t as important. This keeps me only working on the most vital tasks, and not getting lost in the weeds. “Move” for me means typing command-S s2 ENTER. If I am moving another item to the last used place I can just hit command-S ENTER.
Apart from that, there are various philosophical things from the “Getting Things Done” book cult, like if something takes 2 minutes or less, do it immediately, etc. These are behavioural but it’s all related. There’s a bunch of “cult classic” books about productivity you might want to skim before settling on a random template that will just fall apart.
That’s about it. It’s really not complicated, and I prefer that. A big template document would just slow me down, personally.