My newsfeed is simply populated by posts which are "Someone likes something" followed by a video or a picture. Is there a way I can get rid of all of these with no exception, and just see what people are actually posting? Frankly it's just distracting and I end up procrastinating
You can unfollow your friends to get rid of this kind of notification. But remember by unfollowing you miss other posts from them also.
There is no other way to do so.
A nice workaround is to make a list, and and all the people in that list. Then view that list instead of looking at news feed or 'most recent'.
This doesn't take too long. Keep pressing a keyboard key and tab to select the suggested friend, then move on to the next key once done. Remember the first list creation dialog will only allow you to add a limited number of friends. After creation, you can add more. You would also have to add people with names in different languages (those with neither names nor alternate names starting from those letters on your default keyboard) but I'm guessing they'd most probably be few and you can make it work.